By Jeff Nations - firstname.lastname@example.org
Lisa Rhodes was officially named as Central High School's new varsity softball coach last week, but in effect she's been on the job for the better part of a year now.
Rhodes, who served as a volunteer assistant coach under Marty Bundrick last season, thinks that head start will pay dividends for the Falcons in 2013.
"I think it's really beneficial for me and the girls," said Rhodes, a 2007 Bridgewater College graduate. "We already know each other, and they have a sense of me and my coaching style."
A former pitcher as a four-year varsity player at Turner Ashby High School and Bridgewater College, Rhodes started her coaching career as a varsity assistant at Loudoun County. Rhodes spent three years there.
"She's got a good, solid background," Central athletic director Kenny Rinker said.
Last season, the Falcons finished third in the Bull Run District regular-season standings. A 7-0 loss to Goochland in the Group A, Region B quarterfinals ended Central's season with a 12-10 record.
Rhodes likes the group she'll inherit this coming season after having coached the Falcons last year. Among the all-district players expected back next season for the Falcons are rising senior catcher Mikayla Viar, and rising junior pitcher Mary Wakeman and outfielder Katelyn Poston.
"As far as talent goes, I'm really excited to get my hands on these girls," Rhodes said. "They've got a lot of raw talent. The drive and desire are already there as a foundation. It's just going to be polishing things up."